Northern Travel Tips
Purchase Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is highly recommended while travelling in the north as Calm Air is not responsible for expenses or delays due to weather, which can occur at any time of the year. The Churchill and Kivalliq Region has winter blizzards as well as an active spring and fall storm season, but life by the sea means the weather can drop at any time and be out for a day or more days. According to Environment Canada, Churchill has more IFR (Instrument Flight Rules) weather days than any other community in all of the three central provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta. Of note, Churchill and the Kivalliq Region experienced an eight-day blizzard in 2008 where air travel was impossible. If you are travelling to Baker Lake, you should know that it is known as the Blizzard Capital of Canada.
Contact Numbers and Connecting Flight Information
Have important contact numbers and connecting flight information handy in case your flight is delayed.
Carry Sufficient Cash
Travel with sufficient cash to meet your basic needs for a minimum of three days in case of being stranded due to weather. There is a lack of debit machines in the north and some service providers do not accept credit cards, so be prepared. Remember, Calm Air does not offer compensation for weather delays or cancellations.
Some communities in the north do not have cellular phone service so bring a phone card. Most airports do not have Internet service. Telephone and Internet services vary at hotels and lodges. Please check with your hotel or tour operator for details.
Accommodations in the north can be very limited depending on the season. Hotel and lodge reservations should be made prior to arriving at your destination.
Cameras and Camera Equipment
It is recommended that camera equipment is transported in a?pelican case, not a soft-sided camera bag. If your equipment exceeds the carry-on restrictions in size or weight, which is less than other airlines operating with larger aircraft, your carry-on will have to go as checked baggage. Be prepared to be separated with your carry-on if it exceeds Calm Air carry-on restrictions. For more information please see our?carry-on baggage section.
Bring What You Need
Northern communities can have limited amenities. Things like prescription drugs and food for special diets are often unavailable in the North, so ensure you bring sufficient supplies for the length of your trip. It is also recommended, if possible, to plan for up to an extra three days in case weather conditions inhibit air travel.
Follow the Rules
Even though you are travelling to remote communities, these communities are governed by the same Transport Canada regulations as our neighbors to the south. Proceed directly into the terminal building after arrival, do not wander on the ramp or runway, and adhere to the no smoking regulations.
Dress for the Climate
It’s cold up here! Arctic and seaside communities experience unpredictable weather that can change in minutes. Be prepared for a variety of possible weather conditions by checking weather forecasts and checking with your hotel or tour operator for suggestions.
Purchase Medical Insurance
Community based medical facilities have varying capabilities. Should you require serious medical attention that exceeds the capabilities of the local nursing station or hospital, you may have to pay costs for nursing care and to be transported to a larger medical center. Based on the distance to the upgraded facility these Medivac costs can be quite expensive. If you are a Manitoba resident, your Manitoba Health Card will not cover medical costs outside of Manitoba.
Airline Policies and Procedures
Every airline has its own policies, procedures and travel agreements that you should familiarize yourself with prior to travelling. Please take the time to educate yourself. To help ensure your travel expectations are met, please see our?terms & conditions section.